The Amazon rainforest is on fire - FOR WEEKS - burning millions of acres of indigenous territories along with it. The Amazon is home to over a million animal and plant species, along with hundreds of indigenous nations. This magical (now burning) forest produces over 20% of the world’s oxygen. At the rate at which it’s burning, and continues to burn, it will eventually put OUT more CO2 than it does oxygen, becoming a desert.
The fires this year alone are over an 80% increase from the year prior. Human (and all) life will not be sustainable at this growing rate. These fires are also happening on indigenous territories where indigenous people have been trying to protect their land from deforestation, mining, etc...
"The smoke has reached all the way to Sao Paulo, more than 1,700 miles away. Images from the city show the sky pitch-black in the middle of the afternoon, the sun blanketed by smoke and ash." - CNN. Smoke has traveled thousands of miles, blanketing major cities in South America.
So much life comes from this forest, along with natural medicine, not to mention, we are burning innocent people (+ plants and animals) literally out of their homes. This is beyond devastating, and globally impacts us all. This is NOT to be ignored.
ORGANIZATIONS: How to donate, advocate, etc...
Below, I listed 10 organization links, and brief sentence from their sites on what their organization is about. There are some great resources I've been finding on Instagram, despite lack of [worldwide] news coverage. I just wanted to share some websites/accounts and organizations you can follow, donate to, and/or share. If you cannot afford donations of any kind, your words and your truth, spreading information, still helps, as it'll reach more people than you think👇
1) Donate to Rainforest Alliance and look for their logo on products. "Our work is bringing real, measurable benefits to forests, communities, and biodiversity around the world…We work at the intersection of business, agriculture, and forests. Together, we amplify the voices of farmers and forest communities, improve livelihoods, protect biodiversity, and help people mitigate and adapt to climate change in bold and effective ways.” CLICK HERE
IG @RainforestAlliance -- also has a post where they shared more organizations they're donating to
2) “Since 1996, Amazon Watch has protected the rainforest and advanced the rights of indigenous peoples in the Amazon Basin. We partner with indigenous and environmental organizations in campaigns for human rights, corporate accountability, and the preservation of the Amazon's ecological systems.” CLICK HERE
Sign their pledge (free): CLICK HERE
3) Protect acres with RAN -- “Rainforest Action Network preserves forests, protects the climate and upholds human rights by challenging corporate power and systemic injustice through frontline partnerships and strategic campaigns…We are committed to working with Indigenous communities and frontline communities directly impacted by profit-driven systems of injustice.” CLICK HERE
Sign their pledge (free): CLICK HERE
CLICK HERE For how to help!
4) “The Amazon Conservation Association is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that has been protecting the western Amazon for almost 20 year now....environmental conservation and restoration in Peru and Bolivia. The org has grown to protect over 4 million acres of rainforest, establish Peru’s first conservation concession, and empower indigenous communities to develop forest-friendly livelihoods...” CLICK HERE
5) “The Rainforest Foundation US works on-the-ground to secure land rights for indigenous people. We strengthen indigenous land security and train indigenous communities to use technology to protect their forests. By investing directly in indigenous communities, we connect people who are deeply motivated to conserve their ancestral lands with the tools, training, and resources necessary to protect their rainforests.”
10 things you can do!
6) Amazon Frontlines: “Our team is comprised of an international group of human rights lawyers, environmental activists, forestry specialists, environmental health scientists, filmmakers, journalists, anthropologists, and farmers. We live and work in the western Amazon…Our mission is to support the struggles of indigenous peoples to defend their rights to land, life and cultural survival in the Amazon Rainforest.” CLICK HERE
7) “Greenpeace is independent! Greenpeace solicits no support from corporations or governments; we rely on the generosity of individuals like you.” They have awesome resources on their Instagram as well." CLICK HERE
Sign petition (free): CLICK HERE
8) “The Amazon Conservation Team partners with indigenous and other local communities to protect tropical forests and strengthen traditional culture. We see a future where healthy tropical forests and thriving local communities exist in harmonious relationship with each other, contributing to the well-being of the planet.”
9) Help buy land -- Rainforest Trust: On a mission for over 30 years. “we’ve already helped protect over 20 million acres around the world and have millions of acres in the pipeline. By 2020, we aim to be working toward the security of 50 million acres.” CLICK HERE
10) The Peoples of the Forest: "The future of indigenous peoples, maroon communities, forest collectors and riverbank dwellers in Brazil is under serious threat. In fact, so is the future of us all." (Thank you for sharing about #peoplesoftheforest @ethereal.1)
This is not a wildfire, part of the birth/death/rebirth (rising from the ashes) cycle of life. These are man-made, and scientists agree. This is directly due to man-kind; how and what we consume; fascists in office/in govt, who do not care about the state of our planet, the land that belongs to indigenous people nor the forest land they're trying to protect. Brazil's President, Jair Bolsonaro, claims they do not have the resources to fight the fires.
For example: These deliberate fires are due to farmers, specifically to create space/clear the forest (mostly illegally) for crop & animal agriculture such as cattle ranching. "The fires are contributing to deforestation," says BBC news.
"Brazil is the world's largest exporter of beef, providing close to 20% of total global exports, according to USDA, a figure rising... Last year the country shipped 1.64 million tonnes of beef - highest volume in HISTORY - generating $6.57 billion in revenue..." - CNN
The rise/demand for meat and dairy products (especially beef) is the biggest contributor to deforestation. The Amazon (and our planet + innocent peoples' & animals land & homes) are slowly being destroyed for the sake of livestock, crop for livestock- including farming GMO crop, drilling for oil, and more, and largely because we have a higher demand for it with growing population. We LITERALLY cannot afford to keep living this way. Not to mention, overpopulation taking precedence over the precious resources we have left. Our source of LIFE to this planet - OXYGEN - is literally being burned before our eyes.
@Ethically_Elizabeth of IG said, “Humans are a plague to the planet; procreating, consuming, traveling, emitting, eating, burning, taking, excreting, it’s all just too much. We must adopt more sustainable practices.” Aside from the indigenous people who have been the guardians of the rainforest, I couldn't agree more. As
What are 9 ways we can help in our everyday lives?
1). SHARE INFO to help raise awareness - it’s free!
2). Be aware of what you consume!
Eat / buy local when possible. This helps the excessive exporting of exotic foods from Brazil.
Go plant-based or eat as much plant based foods as possible.
Stop going to fast food chains which contributes greatly to deforestation
Eat less meat, especially beef - or stop beef consumption all together
3). Reduce oil consumption: Walk, bike, or take public transportation / carpool when possible
4). Generate less waste: grow your own food when possible & compost when possible
5). Reduce, reuse, recycle
6). Donate to organizations (above) and also to organizations that protect indigenous people + wild life. There are so many more than what I listed above, including orgs such as One Tree Planted, WWF and reNature.
7). Ecosia.org is a search engine that helps plant trees
8). Practice safe sex and follow partners’ ovulation cycles if you do NOT want to have kids
9). Find ways to support Indigenous groups in your region and stop appropriating their practices. More resources here. (Thanks @CorpusRitual)
Be more mindful of everyday choices, and be conscious consumer. I realize it’s a privilege to say/do a lot of these things. I am fortunate to have been able to make so many changes. I, myself, suffer from C-PTSD and chronic illness, leaving me with limited options many times. I know what it's like to only be able to focus on moment to moment survival. I am far from perfect and still learn daily, but I consciously try my best to be aware of what I consume in terms of food, products, info, etc... and work on reducing waste.
I am also aware that there are life saving medications people need to take to survive. I am not speaking to this. But we can all try to contribute & help as a whole, to the damage we already caused (as a whole).
Overall, humans (or at least many of us) are polluting & destroying our precious planet, and everything/everyone along with it. This destruction of the rainforest not only directly impacts our future as a species and planet, but is immediately impacting the lives surrounding it, such as indigenous territories and people being burned out of their homes, and animals.
But we can help; there ARE things we can do, and we have to live consciously as much as possible, and act now. Every day is an opportunity for change. I hope this blog has shared ways & organizations, or at least raised some awareness, in which we all can spread info, get involved, and support businesses/activists/people who are contributing to helping the preservation and conservation of the Amazon, indigenous people, animals & our planet.
SHARING IS FREE! Thank you @RainforestAlliance @AmazonWatch & @amazonfrontlines for sharing some of these organizations on IG, so that I could put this all together.